Steven Spielberg didn’t come away with a best director nomination in this year’s British Academy of Film And Television Arts (Baftas) awards announced today, but Lincoln is leading in just about every other category.
With 10 nominations, including best picture, best actor, and best supporting actress, the 16th president, civil war epic now heads into the Oscar race (whose nominations are announced tomorrow) as the undeniable season frontrunner.
Next in the Bafta’s awards count, Brit director Tom Cooper’s adaptation of Les Miserables and Ang Lee’s life-affirming Life of Pi received nine nominations each, The Associated Press reports.
Skyfall, the latest in the 50-year-old James Bond franchise, punched in with eight nominations. Surprisingly, not one of them was a best actor nomination for Daniel Craig, despite countless critics noting his performance as outstanding.
Ben Affleck’s Iranian hostage thriller Argo hauled a respectable seven nominations, including best picture, best actor, and best director for Affleck.
Best picture nominees, then, are Lincoln, Les Miserables, Life of Pi, Argo, and Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal’s Osama bin Laden thriller Zero Dark Thirty.
Being a British awards organization, the Bafta’s, like the the recent Vancouver Film Critics Circle Awards, has a separate category for homegrown work. Best British film pitches Anna Karenina against Skyfall, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Les Miserables, and Seven Psychopaths.
A real fight has emerged in the best actor category. The contenders are Daniel Day-Lewis (Lincoln), Bradley Cooper (Silver Linings Playbook), Hugh Jackman (Les Miserables), Joaquin Phoenix (The Master), and the aformentioned Affleck (Argo).
The best actress category will be no less fiercely battled.
Emmanuelle Riva is nominated for Michael Haneke’s 2012 Cannes Film Festival winner Amour — and as The Guardian notes — was nominated for the same prize 52 years ago for Hiroshima, Mon Amour.
Jessica Chastain gets the nod for Zero Dark Thirty, Marion Cotillard for Rust and Bone, Jennifer Lawrence for Silver Linings Playbook, and Helen Mirren for Hitchcock.
Somewhat predictably, the Bafta best director nominees reflect what has been happening across the awards season. That roll call features Affleck for Argo, Bigelow for Zero Dark Thirty, Haneke for Amour, Lee for Life of Pi, and Quentin Tarantino for Django Unchained.
Voted for around 6,500 members, with the exception of the rising star award — this year eyeing Elizabeth Olsen, Juno Temple, Alicia Vikander, Andrea Riseborough, and Suraj Sharmalicia Vikander — the Baftas will take place on February 10, two weeks before the Academy Awards.
It will be worth Day-Lewis winning just to see a repeat performance of his Clint Eastwood parody at the 2012 Baftas. The ceremony itself will be held at the Royal Opera House in central London, and the host will be Stephen Fry.
Click here for the full nomination list for the 2013 Baftas.